Chapter 2 Sustainable Development Goal 2.2: Malnutrition

This section reports on four global nutrition indicators: stunting, wasting and overweight in children under 5 and anaemia in women aged 15 to 49 years.

2.1 STUNTING AMONG CHILDREN UNDER 5 YEARS OF AGE

The prevalence of stunting among children under 5 years of age in the ECA region was 4.9 percent in 2022, down by more than half from 2000 (10.8 percent) and 2.1 percentage points lower than in 2012 (FIGURE 8, TABLE 7). In all subregions and in almost every ECA country, the prevalence of stunting declined continuously from 2012 to 2020. In 2022 in the ECA region as a whole and in all its subregions, the prevalence of stunting was below the global estimate of 22.3 percent.

However, the prevalence of stunting varies significantly by subregion. It is lowest (2.5 percent) in the EFTA countries and highest in the Caucasus (10.3 percent). The prevalence is above the regional average in all subregions except for the EFTA countries (2.5 percent) and EU-27 and the United Kingdom (3.2 percent).

TABLE 7.

Prevalence of stunting among children under 5 years of age by subregion, percent

2000200520102012201520202022
WORLD33.031.127.926.324.622.722.3
Europe and Central Asia10.89.47.77.06.35.34.9
Caucasus21.221.317.015.213.411.010.3
Central Asia28.022.716.914.712.18.67.7
CIS Europe and Ukraine11.29.98.78.37.56.55.8
EFTA countries3.53.63.23.02.82.52.5
EU-27 and the United Kingdom4.44.23.83.63.43.33.2
Other16.414.510.18.57.15.75.2
Western Balkans15.013.210.08.77.76.45.9
SOURCE: Adapted from UNICEF, WHO & The World Bank. 2023. UNICEF-WHO-The World Bank: Joint child malnutrition estimates - Levels and trends (2023 edition). [Cited 24 April 2023]. https://data.unicef.org/resources/jme-report-2023
FIGURE 8

Prevalence of stunting among children under 5 years of age by subregion

SOURCE: Adapted from UNICEF, WHO & The World Bank. 2023. UNICEF-WHO-The World Bank: Joint child malnutrition estimates - Levels and trends (2023 edition). [Cited 24 April 2023]. https://data.unicef.org/resources/jme-report-2023
Download: https://doi.org/10.4060/CC8608EN-fig08

During the past two decades, most countries in the ECA region have seen significant progress in reducing child stunting. The largest reductions in the prevalence of stunting were observed in Albania, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. The prevalence of stunting in 2022 is considerably lower than the global estimate in all countries of the region. As shown in FIGURE 9, despite substantial progress, some countries in Central Asia, the Caucasus and CIS Europe and Ukraine still have a relatively high prevalence (over 10 percent) of stunting: Azerbaijan (13.3 percent), Tajikistan (13.1 percent), Ukraine (12.3 percent) and Kyrgyzstan (10.3 percent).

FIGURE 9

Prevalence of stunting among children under 5 years of age by country and subregion

SOURCE: Adapted from UNICEF, WHO & The World Bank. 2023. UNICEF-WHO-The World Bank: Joint child malnutrition estimates - Levels and trends (2023 edition). [Cited 24 April 2023]. https://data.unicef.org/resources/jme-report-2023
Download: https://doi.org/10.4060/CC8608EN-fig09